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Swansea alcohol-free craft brewer wins top award

Barely a year since its launch, specialist alcohol-free craft brewer, The Drop Bear Beer Co, is celebrating success at one of the UK’s most prestigious drinks industry awards.

Founded by newbie brewers Joelle Drummond and Sarah McNena, Swansea-based Drop Bear burst on to the scene promising to ‘disrupt’ the traditional view of the non-alcoholic beer market.

And their mantra of ‘Dropping the alcohol, perfecting the craft’ has undoubtedly rung true with a gold award at the inaugural ‘Imbibe No & Low Taste Awards 2020’ – where judges awarded Drop Bear’s Tropical IPA the title of ‘Best No & Low IPA’.

Brewing with attitude, Joelle and Sarah are bringing female chutzpah to the traditionally male-dominated brewing world. With the outdoors-loving millennial pair epitomising the healthy lifestyle conscious market they want to capture.

At only <0.5% ABV, their award-winning Tropical IPA packs a punch and is perfect for the traditional bitter drinker.

One sip releases an abundance of tropical hops that burst through the roasted coffee and dark chocolate base with blasts of passion fruit, stone fruit, and citrus.

The Imbibe judges commended the Tropical IPA for its “Punchy, earthy hoppy flavours with a toasted nut character” and its “Long, bitter, herbs and hops finish.”

Among the judging comments were: “I really like how this develops and changes on the palate.” Also, “Very smart for a no / low beer. Tastes like the real thing,” and “Good example of an IPA with well-rounded and balanced flavours which were not too hoppy or full on. Lovely malty and chocolate notes.”

Since their launch in 2019, Drop Bear’s 100 per cent natural beers with punchy, exciting flavour profiles have gained a growing legion of fans. While below 0.5% ABV, the beer’s vegan, gluten-free, and low-calorie credentials have captured the zeitgeist of the drinks market.

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Plaudits for their entrepreneurial abilities (at the Welsh Start-Up Awards) have followed. But the Imbibe Award is the first the Welsh-Australian pair has received for their beer.

Said Joelle, “We only launched a year ago, so this is the first beer award that Drop Bear has ever entered, and we are really proud to take home gold with our Tropical IPA.

“This beer doesn’t play it safe, it’s punchy and in your face – a bit like us – so it’s great to see this paying off. The market deserved a truly full-flavoured IPA, and we are proud to be able to provide that to consumers.

“Right now, we’re having a ‘proud beer mum’ moment! Is that a thing? Well, it should be!”

In addition to Tropical IPA, three further beers have been ‘brewed with attitude’. Yuzu Pale Ale and Bonfire Stout, will be joined later this year by a new brew – a ‘crisp, smooth, and moreish’ revolutionary craft lager.

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